Questions on Rare as a Rhino | Science News for Students

Questions on Rare as a Rhino

Oct 2, 2014 — 7:30 am EST
ground pangolin


Before reading

1.    Name three common plants or animals and three rare ones. Why do you think that the rare ones are rare? How are they unlike the common species?

2.    What kinds of human activities might result in fewer numbers of a species of wild animal or plant? Working with a partner, come up with a list of five activities that can lead to rarity and explain why.

During reading

1.    Why do islands have a greater percentage of rare species than continents do?

2.    What is the Haleakala silversword and where does it grow?

3.    How can hunting cause rarity?

4.    What are the three pressures that are causing tigers to become rarer?

5.    Why might rhinos (or any other species that is few in number) have difficulty making babies?

6.    Rhino horn was more expensive, by weight, than what in 2012? And why was it so expensive?

7.    Describe two ways Naresh Subedi helps to protect rhinos in Nepal.

8.    Why is an Indian rhinoceros sometimes known as a “unicorn”?

After reading

1.    Some animals, such as tigers and rhinos, are rare in part because people use them in traditional medicines (even when there is no proof such medicines work). What would you say to someone who was planning to use one of these medicines?

2.    Governments and other groups and individuals may spend a lot of money to keep one rare species from becoming extinct. Is this a good use of money? Explain your answer.


1.    Rare species are often found in isolated places, such as on mountains and islands. Look at a map of the country where you live and list five places that might be home to many rare species. Explain what it is about these places that seems to make them good candidates for rare species.

Further Reading

K. Hulick. "Rare as a rhino." Science News for Students. October 2, 2014.